Rush is a Band

A blog devoted to RUSH:
Neil Peart, Geddy Lee & Alex Lifeson

Sat, Jun 3, 2023

Updates and other random Rush stuff

Fri, Mar 20, 2015@12:26PM | comments

Last Saturday evening Rush was the recipient of the 2015 Allan Waters Humanitarian Award at the 2015 Juno Gala Dinner & Awards ceremony in Hamilton, ON. The Award recognizes outstanding Canadian artists whose contributions have positively enhanced the social fabric of Canada. Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi presented the Award to Geddy Lee who was on hand to accept it on behalf of the band. Rush manager Ray Danniels was also honored with the 2015 Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award recognizing individuals who have made a significant impact on the Canadian music industry. Rush's introductory induction video highlighted all of Rush's charitable endeavors over the years and can be seen on YouTube here. The Ray Danniels induction video featured several old band photos with Ray along with interview segments with all three members of Rush, Anthem's Pegi Cecconi, and many others paying tribute to Ray. You can watch that video on YouTube here. For complete coverage of the evening's festivities including backstage photos and video, check out this post.

Rush posted an announcement to their website earlier this week requesting photo submissions from fans to celebrate the band's 40th anniversary. From

For RUSH's 40th anniversary, we'd like you to submit photos of your favourite RUSH moments.

Ideally, we're looking for one to three photos that succinctly chronicle your history as a RUSH fan. These could be:

* Your first show
* A memorable moment
* Taking your child to see their first RUSH concert
* You, with a banner or sign you made
* A photo of you rocking your favorite RUSH paraphernalia

You get the picture. We want to see photos of you, through the years, showing your support for the band.

These submissions may be used as part of our R40 campaign, so please know that once you submit these, you are giving your approval for their use. You'll be asked to accept our terms of use at the end of the form.

We can't wait to see what goodies you have for us!

Speaking of the band's 40th anniversary, a new interview with Anthrax bassist Frank Bello was posted earlier this week and he mentioned Rush's upcoming R40 Live tour. The interview was conducted by Madcap Music Review's John Golden at the NAMM 2015 show this past January. Bello spent most of the time talking bass guitars but towards the end of the interview he's asked whether he's excited about Rush's upcoming tour. He mentions how Geddy Lee is a huge influence and then says the following:

... I'm going to be doing something [related to Rush's R40 Tour] that I just agreed to within the next month that's pretty cool ... I can't tell you right now ... I'm very excited about it ...

He doesn't elaborate any further so it could be just about anything. The interview was conducted in January so whatever he was going to do, he has likely done it already. Many fans have speculated that this could mean he'll have a cameo in one of the tour videos. What do you think? You can listen to the entire interview on YouTube here, with the part about Rush coming in around the 8:15 mark.

Keeping on the subject of the tour, the band is currently rehearsing for the tour separately and will get together in Los Angeles for full band rehearsals on March 30th. Neil Peart is out in Los Angeles where he currently resides, diligently rehearsing on his new R40 drum kit at the DW Drums studio. DW's Edge Factor Magazine posted a video to YouTube (thanks Agustin) last week which includes a few seconds of footage of Neil practicing on the kit (from about the 0:53-1:18 mark). In the lead up to the Juno Awards last week, Alex Lifeson was interviewed by the Toronto Sun and spoke a little about how rehearsals are going:

... "We're prepping for the tour; we're at that stage where we've just started playing. You don't want to hear us," says Lifeson. ... "We're nuts," says Lifeson. "We rehearse for six weeks before the rehearsals. I'm serious. I've been rehearsing for three weeks now. I spend four hours, three times a week, and then the rest of the time I play for an hour to two hours. And that's just to get ready for rehearsals." ...

Rush's R40 Live tour kicks off at the BOK Center in Tulsa, OK on Friday, May 8th - just 7 weeks from now.

Throughout 2015 Rush will be releasing all of the Mercury-era Rush albums on vinyl along with a few select titles on Blu-ray audio. They are calling it the 12 Months of Rush, as they will be releasing one or two titles a month each month. They started with Fly By Night in January (Vinyl, Blu-ray Audio), and last month they released their vinyl reissue of Caress of Steel which you can order at this location. The reissue campaign continued this past Tuesday with the release of 2112 and All the World's a Stage on vinyl. The 2112 vinyl reissue is a special Hologram Edition as described in this press release and seen in this 1-minute demo video. All titles are reissued on high-quality vinyl with a 320kbps MP4 Digital Audio download code, with Fly By Night, A Farewell to Kings and Signals also having a Blu-ray Audio release. Fly By Night (Vinyl, Blu-ray Audio) and Caress of Steel are already available, and you can also now order All the World's a Stage and 2112. VH1 Classic's On Tap is running a Twitter contest (thanks Dustin W) all this week where they are giving away copies of the All the World's a Stage and 2112 reissues. The rest of the reissue titles will be released throughout the remainder of the year and can be pre-ordered at the links below:

A Farewell to Kings (04/21/15) - Vinyl | Blu-ray Audio
Hemispheres (05/19/15) - Vinyl
Permanent Waves (06/16/15) - Vinyl
Moving Pictures (07/21/15) - Vinyl
Exit ... Stage Left (07/21/15) - Vinyl
Signals (08/18/15) - Vinyl | Blu-ray Audio
Grace Under Pressure (09/15/15) - Vinyl
Power Windows (10/20/15) - Vinyl
Hold Your Fire (11/17/15) - Vinyl
A Show of Hands (12/1/15) - Vinyl

While on the subject of 2112, Loudwire posted their list of the Top 10 Songs about Drugs this past week and Rush's A Passage to Bangkok made the cut at #8:

Uncontrolled Substance: Marijuana
Lyrical HIGH-light: "Sweet Jamaican pipe dreams, Golden Acapulco nights..."
Of course these crazy Canadians partook in the sweetest leaf. Who else would write a songs that take up entire album sides? Not to mention Roll the Bones (yeah, sure they're dice).

And speaking of 2112 and drugs, reader ou812112 pointed out a 2112 reference in the song I Like Drugs from Steel Panther's 2011 album Balls Out. Towards the end of the song there's a spoken-word piece where a cop says, "we have a 5150 on the 2112" - an apparent nod to the respective Van Halen and Rush albums. You can hear it online at this location at about the 3:35 mark.

Last Friday the folks at RushCon posted travel and hotel details for this year's main convention in Los Angeles as well as the mini-con in Toronto. RushCon 15 will take place in Los Angeles the weekend of July 31st through August 2nd. The festivities will include a Friday evening welcome party, Rush-themed games and prizes, guest speaker Kevin J. Anderson, a charity auction, a Hollywood tour, a closing reception, and - of course - buses to and from Rush's Saturday, August 1st show at the LA Forum (tickets NOT included). The Rush mini-con will take place in Toronto the weekend of June 19-20. It will include a pre-concert party upstairs at the Hard Rock Cafe at Dundas Square before Rush's concert at the Air Canada Centre Friday night. The party will include games, vendors, a silent auction, drinks, snacks, and then a bus ride to and from the show. Saturday attendees will be taken on a bus tour of the Rush landmarks of Toronto, finished off with a closing party at Alex Lifeson's Orbit Room. For all the details check out the RushCon website, and be sure to follow RushCon on Facebook and on Twitter for all the latest news and info.

Yesterday evening I had the honor of appearing on the SHOOTING FromThe LIP podcast with the one and only Donna Halper. Donna and I talk Rush for around one hour with host Kevin Hale. Donna shares her story of discovering Rush, her involvement with Rush's Hollywood Walk of Fame star and Rock Hall induction, and her friendship with the band over the years. I chime in here and there with a fan's perspective and give my opinions on Rush's career and what the future holds for the band. You can listen to the podcast online at this location. Speaking of Donna Halper, she has a new blog up at and this past week posted an article titled Of Airports, Rush Fans, and Gallup Polls:

... Like the members of the band, who are well-known for being philanthropists and family men, Rush fans take care of each other. In fact, in all the years I've spent in broadcasting, they are some of the most compassionate people I've encountered. They have reached out to folks with cancer, folks who are feeling alone, folks who are having a difficult time. They get together before and after concerts. They hold dinners and parties. They are like a large, noisy, sometimes contentious family. They are politically all over the map: some are righties, some are lefties, some are libertarians... but the one thing they all agree on is that Rush is the best rock band ever. ...

Earlier this week PRS Guitars announced a new Special Edition Alex Lifeson Signature Thinline Acoustic Guitar. You can check out a video of Bryan Ewald demonstrating the guitar on YouTube at this location and get all the specifications at the PRS Website here. From the PRS Guitars website:

"I was very pleased when PRS presented me with my SE Angelus acoustic, a beautiful guitar of stunning quality. It was in response to the challenge of building a guitar that shared the integrity and attention to detail that the Alex Lifeson Private Stock Angelus possesses in a package more broadly accessible. The SE Alex Lifeson Thinline is that model. Carefully selected materials, expert craftsmanship and a smart approach to concept resulted in a guitar that is beautiful to look at and rewarding to play." - Alex Lifeson

On a related note, earlier this week Guitar World posted a list of their Top 10 Acoustic Rush Songs in no particular order.

Just a few weeks after the reappearance of Kreiger's Rush-themed van mural to the show in Episode 8 of Season 6, and one week after a YYZ reference in Episode 9, the latest episode of FX's Archer (Season 6, Episode 10 - Reignition Sequence) has included yet another Rush reference. About half-way into the episode, the team is gearing up to go stake out Archer's apartment and Krieger pulls up in his van, which is now disguised as an ice cream truck. Pam asks Kreiger, "what happened to your van?", and Krieger replies:

We can't stake out Archer's apartment in the Rush van, it is too iconic.

You can check out a screenshot of the ice cream van here. Thanks to Butch W for the heads up.

This past week VH1 posted an article highlighting 20 Live Concert Movie Cameos By Hard Rock and Heavy Metal Bands, one of which was Rush's cameo in the 2009 film I Love You Man (thanks RushFanForever). Coincidentally, today is the 6th anniversary of the release of the film.

It's that time of year again, time for classic rock stations across the nation to conduct their annual March Madness battle of the bands/artists competitions. This year Ultimate Classic Rock is running a March Drum Madness bracket poll and Neil Peart is one of the top seeds. He's currently up against Bon Jovi drummer Tico Torres in a close race, so go vote for Neil!

Here are Rush's and Ray Danniels's introductory induction videos from last Saturday night's 2015 Juno Gala Dinner & Awards ceremony:

That's all for this week. Only 7 more weeks until the R40 Live tour kicks off! Have a great weekend!!